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Tuticorin Custodial Deaths: CCTV Before Father-son's Arrest Shows No 'argument' With Cops

In a major revelation, Republic TV on Monday has accessed the CCTV footage outside Jayaraj and Bennicks's mobile shop in Tuticorin before their arrest

Update at 3:30 PM

Madurai Bench of Madras HC has said that it will not object to Tamil Nadu governemnt's decision to seek a CBI probe, according to ANI.

In a major revelation, Republic TV on Monday has accessed the CCTV footage outside father-son duo - Jayaraj and Bennicks's mobile shop in Tuticorin from the day they were arrested - June 19. The CCTV footage shows that there was no argument between the duo and the police, contradictory to police claiming that the duo had resisted arrest, arguing with the officials. Moreover, the footage shows the father - Jeyaraj walking across the street on being summoned by the police, while Bennicks is seen following shortly.

Tuticorin custodial deaths: TN CM Palaniswami assures CBI probe after Madras HC's nod

Details of Police FIR

FIR was filed against the duo based on Sathankulam Head Constable Murugan’s complaint who stated that at 9.15 PM he noticed that APJ MOBILES shop was open beyond lockdown time period. As per the FIR, Murugan reportedly asked the crowd outside the shop to leave, while Jeyaraj and Bennicks refused to go. He added that the father and son sat on the ground protesting and verbally abused the policemen, rolling on the foor hurting their knees. Moreover, the constable stated in the FIR that the fatehr-son duo threatened to hit them as he reminded them of the lockdown, leading to the police arresting them.

Tamil Nadu CM assures CBI probe

On Sunday, the Tamil Nadu Chief Minister E Palaniswami assured that the Tuticorin custodial death case will be handed over to the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) after seeking Madras High Court's permission in the 30 June hearing. Previously,  Sathankulam police station Inspector Sridhar - who was on-duty when the two victims were allegedly tortured in custody, leading to their deaths was suspended by the Tamil Nadu police department. Sources add that as of now 4 police officers - including sub-inspectors and constables who were on duty have already been transferred. Slamming the government, DMK chief M K Stalin, has said that justice will be done only if the policemen were booked for murder under the Indian Penal code.

Tuticorin custodial deaths: DMK chief Stalin alleges 'CM ordered CBI probe under pressure'

What is the Tuticorin custodial death case?

P Jayaraj (59) and his son Bennicks (31) - residents of Tuticorin, were picked up for questioning by Sathankulam police on June 19 for violating lockdown rules. As per police, the duo kept their mobile shop open during the lockdown. The duo were allegedly brutally beaten by the police in custody and then later released in a deteriorating health condition.

Tuticorin custodial deaths: Police inspector on-duty during alleged torture suspended

Reports state that after sustaining severe injuries, both victims were shifted to the Kovilpatti government hospital where Beniks died on Monday evening and Jayaraj, who was diabetic, succumbed to a respiratory illness on Tuesday. Moreover, hospital records state that both had multiple marks on the posterior's gluteal region, and Bennicks' knee caps were pressed, as per reports. The deceased's kin has claimed that both victims were subjected to excessive torture, verbal and physical humiliation in police custody, which has now been reportedly confirmed by the examining doctor.

Tuticorin custodial deaths: Ex-gratia of Rs 25 lakh to kin announced by AIADMK

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